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Speech: Peters - New Zealand Is Not A One Party State


Rt. Hon Winston Peters Leader NZ First

November 21 2011

Extracts from a speech by Rt Hon Winston Peters, Westfield Mall, Chartwell in Hamilton today.

New Zealand Is Not A One Party State

The great British wartime leader Winston Churchill said: “Democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”
He could have been referring to New Zealand 2011 and the extraordinary events of the past few days.

You vote in an election on Saturday. You choose the government you want to govern New Zealand for the next three years.

You decide – you walk into the ballot box – and when the counting is finished it’s up to those elected to form a stable government.

Under MMP no party has been able to govern alone. This is because New Zealanders have commonsense and remember the days of dictatorship under FPP governments.

Since MMP none of Mr Key’s “new” fears have ever transpired.

And they won’t in the future.

New Zealand is not a one party state – we do have a parliament consisting of a government and an opposition.

This is a democracy. There is freedom of speech and association. Parliament is a place of ideas, of policies, of compromise and most of all a place of cooperation.

MPs of whatever views have to work together in the best interests of ALL New Zealanders.

There are crucial issues ahead of us because of the Western financial crisis.

We have to cooperate to get the best outcome for New Zealand. No single party or individual has all the ideas how to handle this crisis. We have to go for best and safest plans and we have to discuss them like adults.

National’s leadership has to understand that democratic government, particularly in these times, is not just some business deal for certain shareholders.

We find New Zealand First is being targeted this week by the Prime Minister
With some very erratic reasoning, he’s blaming New Zealand First for bringing down a government that has not even been voted on.

All we did was explain our position to voters. We will go into Opposition and keep an eye on things.

We will support good ideas and we will vote against dumb stuff like selling assets like power stations and we will block the sale of prime farmland to foreign interests,

Sounds reasonable doesn’t it?

New Zealand First will not give any political party a blank cheque to carve up New Zealand and sell it to their mates overseas.

National is spreading confusion. That’s because National is confused. National does not have some divine right to do what it likes for the next three years.

The other parties don’t have that right either and neither do we.


And we will not go along with creating two states within New Zealand with separate systems for separate races.

This divides us – and is also very expensive. The idea of a separate justice system, separate prisons, separate social welfare is nonsense.

The biggest help for Maori is the same as everyone else. Good jobs, a decent living wage, housing healthcare and education.

What National fears – what they can’t bear the thought of – is not being able to do as they like for three years. It’s time there was some Opposition in parliament.

Don’t forget – John Key has said he won’t work with New Zealand First.

We will cooperate with any minority government whether it’s National of Labour. But do not expect us to fall over and vote for – or abstain from – voting on issues like asset sales and separatism.

We suggest that for the next few days we finish campaigning on our issues and let the voters make up their minds.

Now – on Wednesday NZ First will be in Aotea Square in Auckland for an open air meeting. We cordially invite John Key to attend so we can have a public debate out there with the people.

He could put his views forward explain his worries and we’ll respond.

We promise him a fair hearing and courteous treatment. I’ll even shout him a cup of coffee but it will have to be in a takeaway cup.

Now that’s a fair offer. Let’s get everything out in the open – and have a free exchange of ideas!


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